treating bga with maracyn?
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treating bga with maracyn?

This is a discussion on treating bga with maracyn? within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> Hey i recently started dosing my tank with maracyn in an attempt to kill off my bga and it seems to be having effect. ...

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treating bga with maracyn?
Old 05-13-2009, 11:52 PM   #1
 
treating bga with maracyn?

Hey i recently started dosing my tank with maracyn in an attempt to kill off my bga and it seems to be having effect. Lots of it look like its losing its grip on rocks and glass, but at the same time, other bunches of it seem to be springing up. Is there something more i can do to my tank to kill off the bga?
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Old 05-14-2009, 12:01 AM   #2
 
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This is a fresh water tank, correct? Isn't blue green algae (Cyanobacteria) a saltwater issue? I've not read about using Maracyn to treat for algae problems. In correcting my algae problems I've fiddled with lighting schedules, fert routines and a clean up crew. Someone please chime in with info...
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Old 05-14-2009, 01:51 AM   #3
 
bga is in freshwater tanks. i know.. cuz i have it... and its everywhere. I vaccum as much as i can but it just grows so fast.... http://www.theplantedtank.co.uk/algae.htm its the second one.
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Old 05-14-2009, 10:40 AM   #4
 
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Thanks for that link! I wasn't aware of the fact that it presents itself in fresh water aquaria. I also had no idea that you could treat algae with meds in order to get rid of it.
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Old 05-14-2009, 11:08 AM   #5
 
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I've had it before too and killed it off when I happened to treat the fish with Furan 2. Mine was mostly on the sand so I was vacuuming it up when it appeared. You can almost peel it off like carpet.
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Old 05-14-2009, 12:31 PM   #6
 
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I have had this, but rarely, and never in quantity (although I think it was heavier sometime back in the 1980's, too far back for me to remember clearly). I read the linked article. All well and good, but I don't recommend using medications unless necessary to cure fish. Algae in any form is natural but when it gets out of hand it means the tank maintenance is not up to scruff and/or there is too much light and nutrients. Just so you don't think I'm criticizing your situation--I had some of this a couple of months ago, although only on one surface plant where the light is stronger. If the water is kept balanced and there are plants, algae of any kind should not become a problem.
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Old 05-14-2009, 01:55 PM   #7
 
you're right byron, the thing is i went to college and elf the tank at home with my parents who don't know how to take care of it so they only top it off with water occasionally and feed the fish. when i came back it was literally on everyhing, i had a coffeolia in my tank as a center piece and it made a tent. it was literally, the grossest thing ive ever seen in an aquarium. i vaccumed it up and liek jeaninel said, it comes up liek carpet but it was comming abck every couple if days, like my gravel, you could see it changing color as it kept growing back. I started dosing with meds and it looks like its slowly falling apart and getting washed away. Ive been doing regualr daily water changes to keep the med concentration to a tolerable level for my fish but i was jsut wondering if there was anything else i could try. the meds are costing me roughly 5 bucks a day. Its really adding up.
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Old 05-14-2009, 03:01 PM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by SinCrisis View Post
you're right byron, the thing is i went to college and elf the tank at home with my parents who don't know how to take care of it so they only top it off with water occasionally and feed the fish. when i came back it was literally on everyhing, i had a coffeolia in my tank as a center piece and it made a tent. it was literally, the grossest thing ive ever seen in an aquarium. i vaccumed it up and liek jeaninel said, it comes up liek carpet but it was comming abck every couple if days, like my gravel, you could see it changing color as it kept growing back. I started dosing with meds and it looks like its slowly falling apart and getting washed away. Ive been doing regualr daily water changes to keep the med concentration to a tolerable level for my fish but i was jsut wondering if there was anything else i could try. the meds are costing me roughly 5 bucks a day. Its really adding up.
I would simply do more frequent partial water changes at this point, up to 50% daily (won't harm the fish with a good conditioner and provided the water parameters are close--but see my comment in para 3 below). Your info is exactly what I'd expect--partial water changes were not being carried out and as a result the nitrates accumulated (more on this momentarily) and that is what caused the algae to proliferate. I still don't recommend using meds for this.

Algae requires food and the easiest source is nitrates. Normally the plants use nitrates, some anaerobic bacteria use nitrate to produce oxygen and release nitrogen gas in the process, and the rest we remove with the pwc. Don't know if there are plants in this tank, but if so, they can only utilize the light and nutrients (nitrate) to the limit determined by the CO2, and once that is reached algae have the advantage because they can extract carbon from carbonates better than plants.

A side note, what is the ph in the tank and what is the pH of your tap water? May be too late on this point, but my direction in this question is that over time the pH in a tank without pwc will usually drop and be acidic. The nitrogen cycle can slow down considerably if the pH is below 6.4 (that's the number I've read, not saying it is exact) which means ammonia accumulates. However, at an acidic pH, much of the ammonia is converted to ammonium which is not toxic like ammonia, and the fish in the tank can adapt. If the pwc then occurs and the new water is alkaline to the extent that the tank pH rises above pH 7.0 following the change, the ammonium changes back to ammonia and bang go the fish. As I say, you would have seen this if it happened, but you should check the ph as it could still occur under these conditions.
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Old 05-14-2009, 08:42 PM   #9
 
oh the ph out of ym tap is 8.0 and with all the driftwood, my tank water is usually around 7.6. I haven't gotten a chance to test it but with all the water changes ive been doing, its probably between 7.6 and 8.0. Yes there are live plants, a lot fo tehm died when the bga chocked the light out of them but a couple are surviviing. I have no CO2 injection but i do dose flourish excel when im home, on a weekly basis. THis isnt nearly enough but the price of excel adds up quickly too. I'm currently debating if i should invest in a CO2 system but i dont think i have enough plants to warrant it. theres 3 amazon swords, one microsword in driftwod, 2 microswords somewhere in the tank, msotly dead. 1 coffeolia, and a dying banana plants that now yellow but still firm so im seeing if it bounces back. i tried adding duckweed to drop the nitrates but no matter how much i introduce my danios seem to gobble them up overnight. I'm sure my nitrates are high but i dont ahve a nitrate test, my API kit came faulty, i need to grab a bottle of nitrate tester.

Another reason why im going with meds is cus im sure a lot of the bga is stuck under my gravel when i vaccum so im using meds as a means to get the best "cleaning" effect. Im turning the gravel daily and i am planning to remove my rocks and driftwood to scrub them.
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Old 05-15-2009, 11:07 AM   #10
 
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Originally Posted by SinCrisis View Post
oh the ph out of ym tap is 8.0 and with all the driftwood, my tank water is usually around 7.6. I haven't gotten a chance to test it but with all the water changes ive been doing, its probably between 7.6 and 8.0. Yes there are live plants, a lot fo tehm died when the bga chocked the light out of them but a couple are surviviing. I have no CO2 injection but i do dose flourish excel when im home, on a weekly basis. THis isnt nearly enough but the price of excel adds up quickly too. I'm currently debating if i should invest in a CO2 system but i dont think i have enough plants to warrant it. theres 3 amazon swords, one microsword in driftwod, 2 microswords somewhere in the tank, msotly dead. 1 coffeolia, and a dying banana plants that now yellow but still firm so im seeing if it bounces back. i tried adding duckweed to drop the nitrates but no matter how much i introduce my danios seem to gobble them up overnight. I'm sure my nitrates are high but i dont ahve a nitrate test, my API kit came faulty, i need to grab a bottle of nitrate tester.

Another reason why im going with meds is cus im sure a lot of the bga is stuck under my gravel when i vaccum so im using meds as a means to get the best "cleaning" effect. Im turning the gravel daily and i am planning to remove my rocks and driftwood to scrub them.
This will sort itself out, hang in there. I wouldn't worry about testing nitrates just now; we know they were high and in my oipinion caused this (along with light) and what's done is done and you know that the regular partial water changes will handle nitrates. I have a nitrate test kit, got it because I was curious what the nitrate was in my two fairly-heavily planted tanks with lots of fish, but I don't test for nitrates often because I know what the tank is doing. I keep my eye on the pH, that to me is a good indicator of things.

The amazon swords will probably survive; I have found them fairly resilient even when deprived of light for a spell. Clean off the dead leaves and once the water is back to normal you'll probably see new leaves appearing. I have a Echinodorus macrophylum in my 90g that is 12 years old; it was in another tank for years, and due to an excess of floating plants dwindled down to nothing beyond the roots and a single small leaf when I tore that tank down and moved it to the present 90g. If you look at the 90g tank photo, you'll see it just right of centre, with huge leaves floating on the surface. I nearly threw it out thinking it had had it for good, but a couple of stringy white roots said it was still alive, so... sometimes they can surprise us.

I don't know your level of experience or knowledge with plants, so pardon me if I'm intruding where I shouldn't, but I'd like to offer a suggestion. I wouldn't bother with CO2 if I were you given your situation. First, I don't think its necessary for a thriving planted tank, and second if you will be absent for extended periods again it is something that will require close monitoring and could be another source of trouble. I have two aquaria that are in my view well planted and I do not use CO2 and never have. I've had tanks looking like these for 15+ years. As long as the light and nutrients are in balance, the plants will thrive and algae won't be a pest. You can take a look at the photos under "Aquariums" and see what you think for yourself, but if this is something you're after it can be done easily without the additional expense of CO2. I have about 1 watt of light per gallon, being two 40w full spectrum tubes over each tank.

I use Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive supplement twice weekly to provide the necessary trace elements/minerals that are not in my tap water which is very soft. If your water is harder, it might not take as much additional fertilization, although something is bound to be missing from tap water. You have to experiment a bit. I have twice in the last 5 months gone to once a week for the Flourish, but both times the plants started developing yellow leaves within a week, and after resuming the twice weekly fertilization it cleared up within a week, so clearly twice a week is what is required to balance the light and CO2 from the fish. If one has CO2, more frequent fertilization is mandatory, according to the authorities anyway. Takashi Amano writes of daily fertilization to balance the CO2 and light. All of this adds up in expense, and for me is another reason not to bother with CO2 systems. Your choice of plants is a bit limited [rooted plants generally are fine, slower growth but healthy and steady, without CO2 and mega light; stem plants (with the exception of Brazilian Pennywort in my experience) don't do well without] but I am satisfied with the look, and the plants aid in filtering the water for the fish, so I'm content.

Last edited by Byron; 05-15-2009 at 11:11 AM..
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